Is Moving To The US Expensive?


The USA is one of the most popular countries where British citizens migrate. People from the UK consider moving to the US since the culture is almost similar and there are only slight differences in English. The USA also has any weather you want but there are places where you can enjoy the summer heat or the coldness of winter snow.  

But before you can permanently reside in the US, there are things to consider and requirements to fulfill. You need to make preparations not only with your personal belongings, paperwork, and finances as well. Since there is a lot to organize, you need to prepare these several months before you migrate. You may ask for assistance from a lawyer for immigration to help you with your visa application, or request a quote for freight rates. 

Before you can fulfill your American dream, you need to have an idea of how much it would cost you migration. Since it can be expensive, you need to prepare your finances to avoid delays in the documentation. 

Costs of Documents Needed 

Those who are not eligible to enter the USA visa-free need to secure a visa to stay in the USA. The most common immigrant visas applied are family immigration, spouse visa, and employment visa. However, there is a limited number of approved US visas in a year, the process may take a long time before it is approved. 

If you are planning to move to the US, you need to apply for the United States Citizenship & Immigration Services. An immigration petition may cost up to $700. Aside from visa and petition papers, all applicants are required to have a medical exam and vaccinations before entering the USA.  

If you have an employment opportunity in the US, you can use this as a way to have a permanent residency in the USA. If you are already a permanent resident, you can invite your dependents to settle permanently as well.  

Getting a Green Card 

If you plan to permanently reside in the US, you need to apply for a green card. Though it is not considered a visa, this allows you to permanently reside in the US but can be revoked if the terms and conditions signed are not properly followed.  

Cost of Transporting your Personal Belongings 

If you are moving from the UK, there might be a need to transfer your personal belongings as well. It may cost $2718.6 per 20ft container and may last up to 26 days since it is a port-to-port transfer. This is just the base fare. There are other excluded fees such as insurance, and door-to-door service. This is a rough estimate only so there might be other adjustments to the fees. 

If you think shipping takes too much time for the transfer of your belongings, you may transfer them via air freight. However, you need to consider that shipping them via air may cost a lot more than the port-to-port transfer. It may cost up to $2300 for a 250kg household item.  

Looking For a Place To Stay 

There are homes and apartment units that you can lease or purchase in the USA. Usually, properties in the US cost less than those in the UK. The same goes for renting since the pandemic has affected the rental rates in the USA.  

Becoming a US Permanent Resident 

As mentioned earlier, you need to secure a green card to permanently reside in the USA. You can obtain this by starting with an employment visa or a family sponsorship. The green card applies to high-skilled workers and immediate family members of an American Citizen. 

Applying for a green card is easy if you have received a job offer from an established company in the USA or you are a family member of a USA resident.  

The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program allows up to 50,000 visas available per year for foreigners that are eligible on joining the Green Card Lottery. Applicants from countries with low immigration rates can qualify, but if you won the Green Card Lottery and you are already residing in the USA, you may adjust your residency status. 


There are a lot of ways to move to the USA. Whether you are an employee of a US-based company or an immediate relative of an American citizen, you can reside permanently in the USA. However, it may be expensive due to the paperwork that needs to be accomplished and other factors such as the new home and transfer of belongings. 

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